Nilotpol Kar Business Director, Construction Chemicals, BASF South Asia
Nil has built his 30-year career, on a passion for materials technology, value creation, and continuous improvement. Over the years, this has led him to work with market leaders in cement, chemicals and construction industries and across geographies. This has included stints in Middle East, Singapore and Australia.
Through the last three decades, he has seen the construction chemicals industry grow through technologies and trends to a great shape what is present today with more innovations on the anvil.
Amongst his rewarding experiences, the first which comes to his mind as one of his most rewarding and memorable experiences, early in his career, included working on a unique Home Building Center in Kolkata that served as centers for information sharing around construction best practices and also a direct marketing campaign that lead him to create content for home builders and interact with numerous customer touch points in the market.
“Today, with several cross – functional and leadership roles behind him, Nil subscribes to a 3P framework, which he believes has endured over these years – People, Products and Processes. People are most important, it’s my duty to put processes and systems in place and then position team to deliver the value.”
The other experience he treasures the most was the launch of a new type of self-consolidating concrete called the Smart Dynamic Concrete for common grade concrete types, across emerging and mature markets of Asia Pacific between 2009 – 2011, including advanced countries like Japan and Australia, which has now become quite a trend in India and emulated in practice across high end and low end markets (i.e. slump rehabilitation projects). These solutions help in building faster, improve productivity, reduce rectification, eliminate vibration, reduce labour and eventually reduce overall project costs. He is convinced this is future concrete, another first from the world of BASF innovations, and feels such a technology could support the PM’s mission on ‘Housing for All’, ‘Smart Cities’, with speed, quality and durability in mind.
While being close to end users in his marketing, sales, technology development roles, Nilhas also enjoyed working as part of large stakeholder teams which have been involved in flagship construction projects like the Palms and Burj Khalifa – the modern marvel in Dubai. Nil’s work in Australia exposed him to new dimensions of the operating environment in mature markets holistically.
Moving places with roles and companies so often – Nil credits his wife and daughter for supporting this particular aspect of career journey, which reflects not expanding professional exposure, but his passion for experiencing business in different cultures and understanding different styles of people management.
A firm believer in sharing knowledge, Nil has also given more than 1000 presentations over the span of his career, which he believes are fulfilling and rewarding as they allow you to share experiences with peers – Contribute and Learn.
In his current role, as Business Head of BASF’s Construction Chemical Division, Nil finds the opportunity to manage a huge team and also to cross-sell across 14 divisions of the conglomerate very exciting. He believes it is this wide and diverse set of opportunities that keep him motivated every day. “Imagine” he adds, “While we can sell to auto companies, we can also sell materials technology to farmers to build their homes with high quality material.” And then add the people management based on his past experiences especially managing a huge in-house talent.
In the future, Nil sees the Modi’s mantra of ‘Make in India’ being applied to technology lines and investments in India and is committed to enjoying and learn from this phase of his career as much as he has done so in the past.